Scott Butera has been appointed by MGM Resorts International as their new head of Interactive Gaming Operations, with a primary focus on sports betting. Butera’s appointment is the direct result of the repeal of the PASPA laws by the US Supreme Court, which permits states to legalize and regulate sports betting at their own discretion.
Now “interactive gaming” as a term relates not only to sports betting, but any other games which rely on skill, however on Butera’s appointment, MGM issued a statement confirming that sports betting – presumably via PlayMGM online casino - is due to be the primary focus of his appointment. In fact, sports betting via sports betting sites is widely viewed as being a significant new source of income.
Butera is perfectly suited in this case as he has not only completed 4 years as a commissioner at the Arena Football League, but he served as Foxwoods Resort Casino CEO for a 5 year period and operated the Cosmopolitan & Casino Resort in Los Vegas. Add to that an MBA, twenty years as an investment banker and high-level management position at Tropicana, and one has a formidable combination of skill and experience to aggressively secure the market share of a sector which is projected to be worth over $6 Billion annually by 2023.
It’s also worth noting that Butera helped turn Tropicana around from a chapter 11 bankruptcy – no mean feat . This is an indication of the man’s formidable ability and understanding of operations and the hospitality industry. MGM have unquestionably made an excellent appointment at a critical time in the market development.
MGM is currently buying a racetrack in NY, and opening in Massachusetts in August. With operations in New Jersey, Michigan, Mississippi, Maryland and Nevada all moving toward offering sports betting, it’s sure to be a very full portfolio for Butera to oversee.
MGM as a group undoubtedly want to be at the forefront of new sports betting developments as Borgata NJ was the first Atlantic City casino to come online with sports betting, having opened its sportsbook to sports betting on 15 June already. Currently, both MGM and Caesar’s are racing to the finishing line in Mississippi to get their operations up and running by the end of this summer.
MGM Nevada currently handles in excess of $1 billion in sports betting; and it’s anticipated that with the novelty factor in the newly added states, that figure could be exceeded by other operations. This is, of course, extremely lucrative business, so it’s no wonder that MGM are focused on this area of their business development. It will be interesting to see whether they pull ahead of the pack in forthcoming months with Mr. Butera at the helm.